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Local Authority Case Studies



Area (Hectares)
Town Council Boundary
Population (1996) 30,166
of which  
Longford Town Council 6,444

Phase 1 (Set up phase)

Phase One was the creation of the Potential Litter Generator database and was carried out by a summer student who carried out visual surveys throughout the town and each potential litter generator was classified and categorised according to the different classes set out in the Litter Monitoring Manual. Two hundred and two generators were found broken down into the following 128 Class 1 generators, which are known as potentially high polluters, and 71 Class two generators, which are known as potentially moderate polluters, and three Class 3 generators, which are known as temporary or seasonal polluters. Once this information was collected, it was entered onto the Potential Litter Generator Forms and then each generator was plotted onto the Litter Generator Potential Maps using the GIS software. Crosses were plotted on the map red, blue and green according to the generator class.

Phase 2 (Survey Phase)

In this phase, the Litter Generator Potential Maps were used to identify where there were significant clusters of pollution risk. Three types of survey areas were required:

(a) High Risk Survey Areas,
(b) Random Survey Areas,
(c) Local Knowledge Survey Areas,

High Risk Survey Areas
These were pre-set points which represented the locations with the highest possible risk of being polluted. In order to identify these areas buffers or zones were created around each generator. These areas were chosen according to the relative risk of litter pollution occurring at each location within the larger functional area. The number of overlapping zones and the value assigned to each zone were used to decipher the high-risk survey areas/hottest zones.

Random Survey Areas
These were chosen by the random selection tool in the GIS programme.

Local Knowledge Survey Area
These were chosen by the summer student.

Once the survey areas were identified the Litter Quantification Surveys and Litter Pollution Surveys were carried out.

Litter Pollution Surveys

Twenty Litter Pollution Surveys were required to be carried out by Longford Town Council and each survey involved a visual inspection of a 50m stretch to determine the extent and severity of any litter observed. Three types of areas were assessed during the survey.

(a) High Risk Area (as identified by GIS Maps)

Two high risk areas (hot spots) were identified:

  • the area surrounding the AIB Bank ATM and Supermac's, Main Street and
  • the area in the immediate vicinity of Deli Burger and the taxi rank, Ballymahon Street.

Four surveys were carried out in each of the above areas on various days.

(b) Random Survey Areas (as identified by the GIS Maps)

The two areas selected for these surveys were:

  • The area in the vicinity of Donlon's Newsagent and Doyles Pub/Corner Shop on Dublin Street.
  • The area surrounding Abrakebabra Takeaway on Lower Main Street.

(a) Local Knowledge Survey Areas (as identified by the Surveyor)

The four areas selected for these surveys were:

  • The area surrounding Newsround and Paddy Powers Bookmakers, Ballymahon Street.
  • The ditch running along the perimeter of St. Mel's College grounds at Major's Well Road.
  • St. Joseph's Road, based on the fact that Scoil Mhuire Secondary School is located there and given that the road is regarded as a main approach to the Bus and Train Station.
  • The Market Square (incl. the Junction with Earl Street).

One survey was carried out in each of the above areas.

Litter Quantification Survey

Six Litter Quantification Surveys were required to be carried out by Longford Town Council to identify the type and origin of litter pollution in an area. This survey involved a litter item counting exercise in a 50m stretch of the Authority's area. It involved counting all items of rubbish.

The areas chosen for this survey were:

1. Luigis Take Away/ Bank of Ireland ATM
2. Supermacs/ Ailled Irish Bank ATM
3. Donlon's Newsagent
4. Newsround
5. St. Mel's College
6. Scoil Mhuire

The results of all surveys were submitted to TES Consulting Engineers, the Litter Monitoring Body in September 2001.

Longford Town Council did not experience any major difficulties while carrying out the surveys. A student was employed during the summer months and, with the help of the Assistant Staff Officer of Longford Town Council and TES Consulting Engineers, this work was completed.

From carrying out the surveys it was noted that a large amount of litter was cigarette and chewing gum related. Longford Town Council have since purchased a number of cigarette and chewing gum bins which are at present attached to poles around the town and it is hoped that they will reduce the amount of associated litter being dumped on the streets.

Ms. Jacinta Maguire, Longford Town Council, Market Square, Longford, County Longford.
Tel: 043 46474

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